Bandura’s Social Modeling

Albert Bandura argues that personality is shaped not only by environmental influences on the person, but also by the person’s ability to influence the environment. Social learning states that thinking is an important determinant of behavior.

The inclusion of cognitive viewpoints within a behavioral framework has been a relatively recent trend, especially apparent in the work of personality learning theorist J.B. Rotter. Rotter believes that the most important variables in determining personality are the person’s expectations concerning future outcomes and the values of different reinforcements that might occur in a particular situation (Atkinson et al., 2000; Smith et al., 2001).

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In other words, a person’s behavior depends on what he expects the outcome to any particular action to be and what those outcomes are worth. The likelihood that someone will be aggressive when trying to return a merchandise to a department store would depend then, on that person’s expectation about whether or not aggression will work (Atkinson et al., 2000).
In Bandura’s viewpoint, human motives (Atkinson et al. 2000; Papalia, 2002).  With this premise, the theory is basically leaning toward the philosophical idea of freedom.  Man is free to chart his course and how he is supposed to fulfill his various needs; i.e. his physiological dimension. In addition, the manner with which he carves himself in a particular niche that satisfies his psychological domains is also based on his own volition.
There is no flavor of unconscious thoughts pervading motivation like when the idea of psychological instincts being interpreted within Maslow’s understanding; in contrast to this notion, any individual can basically control their own behavior.
This theory believes on the capacities of human nature to achieve what man wants to achieve rather than be held captive by forces within him or in his external world; it is the internal determinants such as we may choose skills to lie dormant or latent (Papalia et al., 2002; Smith et al., 2002). For example, i may not imitate aggressive behavior unless i am provoked or/and believe that I am more likely to be rewarded by it than punished for it.
Since the premise of this theory hinges on freedom, a person’s characteristics therefore are developed by social influences. According to Bandura and later by personality theorist Rotter, Observational Learning,  accounts for most human learning. It occurs when, as children, in my case for instance, I observe my parents cook, clean, or repair a broken appliance.
Biology or heritability is deemphasized, rather the value of being introduced on a particular aspect or several aspects of human experience is basis or the basis for the development of human characteristics. There is evidence that observational learning for simple “single action” tasks, such as opening the halves of a toy barrel to look at a barrel inside, occurs as early as one year (Smith et al., 2001).
This theory eventually emphasizes individuality or uniqueness, as it fundamentally illustrates in its assertion that every one has the capability for breakthroughs in circumstances which may be difficult. Man is also capable to learn and communicate about himself and others (Papalia et al., 2002; Smith et al., 2002).
Observational learning is not mechanically acquired through reinforcement. We can learn by observation without engaging in overt responses at all. It appears sufficient to pay attention to the behavior of others (Atkinson et al., 2000).
Since man is free, unique and has the possibilities to accomplish whatever he is set to do, it is also asserted that man is proactive: he can choose how to respond in any situation and may even extend himself to advance his interests, both positive and negative at whatever goal or in whatever circumstance he may be in (Papalia et al., 2002; Smith et al., 2002; Atkinson et al., 2000).
The theory overall is hopeful and positive in every essence.  Individuals then have all the chances to make their lives fulfilling, impact others on virtues of honesty, charity and generosity, if and when he determines himself to be one.
Likewise, he can also influence and negatively affect those that surround him when he chooses to do so. In this perspective then, an individual has high hopes of changing his attitudes and disposition, as well as his physical arrangements in life (Papalia et al., 2002; Smith et al., 2002).


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